Buzz (Steps album)

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Buzz
Studio album by Steps
Released 30 October 2000
(See release history)
Recorded 1999-2000
Genre Pop, dance, electropop, synthpop
Length 55:55
Label Jive
Producer Mark Topham, Karl Twigg, Pete Waterman, David Kreuger, Jörgen Elofsson, Andrew Frampton, Ray Hedges, Andy Goldmark, Riprock 'n' Alex, Andreas Romdhane, Josef Larossi, Graham Stack, Jimmy Bralower, Chris Porter
Steps chronology
Steptacular
(1999)
Buzz
(2000)
Light Up the World
(2012)
Singles from Buzz
  1. "Better the Devil You Know"
    Released: 13 December 1999
  2. "Summer of Love"
    Released: 3 July 2000
  3. "Stomp"
    Released: 16 October 2000
  4. "It's the Way You Make Me Feel"
    Released: 1 January 2001
  5. "Here and Now / You'll Be Sorry"
    Released: 28 May 2001
  6. "Mars & Venus (US Only)"
    Released: 3 July 2001
Alternative cover
International cover

Buzz is the third studio album by British pop group Steps, released on 25 October 2000. It reached number four on the UK Albums Chart. The album saw the group edging away from the PWL sound to a more mature sound, working with producers from Sweden and songwriters such as Cyndi Lauper. This more mature sound was also echoed in the new material from Gold:Greatest Hits.

Each of the five group members co-wrote a track on the album, each in turn had a chance to have lead vocals in one whole track. The lead single from the album "Stomp" is a funky upbeat song that is lyricly about partying at the weekend and having a good time, and features a sample from Chic's single "Everybody Dance" The single peaked at #1 in the UK charts making it the group's second #1 hit after "Tragedy".

Preceding singles "Better the Devil You Know" and "Summer of Love", were included on the album after they were released earlier that year with their double a-side singles "Say You'll Be Mine" and "When I Said Goodbye". "It's the Way You Make Me Feel" was the fourth single to be released from the album and reached #2 at the charts after copies of the single were released a week early in shops, damaging their chance at taking the number 1 spot on the UK charts, however this led to the band holding a chart record for the "highest chart jump" when the track went from number 72 to number2. "Here and Now" and "You'll Be Sorry" were the final songs released from Buzz and were both included on a double a-side CD single which reached #4 in UK. The album was certified Platinum in UK and was released in Australia and US in 2001.

As with their previous 2 albums, some cover versions are included on the album. "Better The Devil You Know" is a version of the Kylie Minogue Track and "Here and Now" was originally recorded by Worlds Apart

Release and Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[1]
Yahoo! Music UK 6/10 stars[2]
NME 8/10 stars[3]
Answers.com 3.5/5 stars[4]

Buzz received favorable critical response from different music magazines and websites. Everyone noticed the group's departure from the "ABBA sound", into their own musical style. Allmusic stated "They (Steps) do in fact have their own sound, and it has revealed itself here, crystal clear".[5]

This album saw the group leaning toward a more mature and original sound influenced by electro and techno but still keeping the sound prominent to Steps' earlier work. This is seen as the album plays out through tracks such as "You'll Be Sorry", "Never Get Over You" "Happy Go Lucky" and "Buzz". The art work and overall look for the album is prominent to the sound as their earlier albums had more colour and expression to resemble the enlightenment of the sound of their music. As their sound was more mature their appearances were more sophisticated and showed the progression of Steps into a new era that was carried on into the look of their next album, Gold: Greatest Hits.

In an interview with whereitsat.tv when Steps were asked if their Pete Waterman days where behind them, Lee responded with: "We've been under Pete Waterman's wing for a good two or three years and I think with the third album Buzz, we've had an experience and sort of self-expression and things you know we've had our chance and we've wrote and we've helped produce and we've got them songs on the album Buzz and now that the greatest hits album is coming out and writing and helping produce for that as well and then there's an album after that. It's almost like leaving an era behind and moving onto something else, so you could see it as a new beginning in a way."

However, the album is said to be less successful than their first releases, peaking only at number four on the UK Albums Chart and certifying double platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI)—Step One was certified 8× Platinum and Steptacular was certified 4× Platinum. It is also considered to be their only album to not sell a million copies in United Kingdom, before the group's Boxing Day split. To date, it has sold more than 680,000 units in UK, becoming their lowest-selling album when they were still together. Early UK copies of the album were cased with a metallic silver "STEPS" logo on front. The album also features solos from each member apart from Lee, though he is featured on the song he co-wrote, 'Turn Around'.

Track listing[edit]

UK edition[edit]

# Title Songwriter(s) Producer(s) Length
1 "Better the Devil You Know" Mike Stock, Matt Aitken, Pete Waterman Mark Topham, Karl Twigg, Waterman 3:49
2 "Stomp" Topham, Twigg, Rita Campbell Topham, Twigg, Waterman 3:22
3 "Summer of Love" Topham, Twigg Topham, Twigg, Waterman 3:52
4 "It's the Way You Make Me Feel" Jörgen Elofsson David Kreuger, Elofsson 3:17
5 "You'll Be Sorry" Topham, Twigg Topham, Twigg, Waterman 4:06
6 "Learn to Love Again" Ian Watkins, Andrew Frampton Frampton 3:27
7 "Never Get Over You" Lisa Scott-Lee, Ray "Madman" Hedges, Nigel Butler Hedges 3:55
8 "Hand on Your Heart" Claire Richards, Frampton Frampton 4:03
9 "Happy Go Lucky" Andy Goldmark, Brad Daymond, Alex Greggs Goldmark, Riprock 'n' Alex 3:33
10 "Buzzz" Goldmark, M. Mueller Goldmark, Riprock 'n' Alex 3:21
11 "Here and Now" Andreas Carlsson, A. Thomson Andreas "QUIZ" Romdhane, Josef Larossi 3:45
12 "Paradise Lost" Topham, Twigg Topham, Twigg, Waterman 4:35
13 "Turn Around" Lee Latchford Evans, Michael Garvin, Oskar Paul Graham Stack 3:24
14 "Wouldn't Hurt So Bad" Goldmark, Mueller Goldmark, Jimmy Bralower 3:34
15 "If You Believe" Faye Tozer, Cyndi Lauper, Jan Pulsford, Jasper Irn Chris Porter 3:52
  • The international and US release of Buzz both contain a revised track listing.

US Singles

  1. "Mars & Venus (We Fall in Love Again)" (Radio Play Only)

Personnel[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (2000) Peak
position
Certification
(sales thresholds)
Belgian Albums Chart (Flanders)[6] 11
Irish Albums Chart[7] 23
UK Albums Chart[8] 4 2× Platinum[9]

Release history[edit]

Country Release date Format Label Catalogue
United Kingdom[10] 25 October 2000 Limited edition (CD + metallic logo) Jive / EBUL 051994-2
30 October 2000 Standard edition (CD) 920117-2
Standard edition (cassette) 920117-4
Australia[10] 16 July 2001 Standard edition (CD + bonus tracks) Zomba 920128-2
United States[10] 24 July 2001 Standard edition (CD) 01241-41752-2

References[edit]

  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Yahoo! Music UK review
  3. ^ NME review
  4. ^ Answers.com review
  5. ^ "All music critical reaction to Buzz" allmusic.com Retrieved 7 March 2010
  6. ^ "Belgian Charts > Steps". ultratop.be Hung Medien. Retrieved 08-03-2010. 
  7. ^ "Irish Charts > Steps". irish-charts.com Hung Medien. Retrieved 2008-11-15. 
  8. ^ "Chart Stats > Steps". chartstats.com. Retrieved 2008-11-15. 
  9. ^ "BPI Certified Awards Search". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 04-09-2009. 
  10. ^ a b c "Buzz release dates, editions, and information on official site" gensteps.co.uk Retrieved 7 March 2010
  • "AllMusicGuide". Track listings, formats, trivia, etc. Retrieved 30 June 2007.